Adult students and military students can transfer credits to Penn State in a number of ways.
You can find specific information regarding the credit options for adults through our office for Prior Learning Assessment.
We encourage you to contact us about the different ways you can earn credit prior to enrollment, as well as for more information about how any previous college-level work may transfer to Penn State. To help you get started, please review the credit information below.
The Undergraduate Admissions Office will evaluate courses from other institutions for possible transfer credit after we receive a complete application, including an official transcript from that institution (view our Requirements for Transfer Students). Only coursework successfully completed at other colleges and universities recognized by the six regional accrediting associations will be considered for transfer credit.*
*College level coursework completed at colleges/universities licensed by state boards of education to award associate degrees or higher but that are not members of one of the six regional accrediting associations may be eligible for credit by validation.
Penn State will review any military transcripts provided – they are not required – in order to determine if any credit may be awarded for military experience. For this reason, we highly recommend that you submit your military transcript for credit evaluation. To understand what information you need to send to Penn State, please review the detailed list provided in our Military Credit section.
Penn State awards credit based on the results of many different examinations. If you have taken AP, IB, or CLEP examinations at any point, you may be able to earn credit from your test performance. Additionally, Penn State recognizes DSST exams (formerly DANTES), and awards credit based on test performance in those subjects.
Please visit Academic Credit to find the list of examinations Penn State accepts, as well as a subject-by-subject breakdown of the possible credit available.
Current students can request consideration of credit from transcripts not transferable through other means. While the forms can be obtained from the Undergraduate Admissions Office, this process requires a review by the academic college. Please contact us for the forms and to get more information about what needs to accompany the request.
Penn State can also evaluate a student’s experiences outside of the classroom and award credit based on the information provided about that experience and its relationship to the student’s area of study. The American Council on Education (ACE) evaluates training programs for college credit, and ACE can send the Undergraduate Admissions Office a transcript to review.
Current students also have the option of earning college credit through the submission of a portfolio that outlines how college-level learning experiences have been obtained through non-college experiences. Once enrolled, students should contact their academic college for the college’s procedure for participating in this portfolio assessment. The student must identify the specific Penn State course, and then in accordance with the college’s procedure, make the request for portfolio review by petition.